# Typography and style for acknowledgments written in different languages

My thesis is written in English, but for the acknowledgment page I think I will write a first paragraph in English, one in Italian and one in French.

I was wondering if I have to do something particular with babel or if there are any typographic / style recommendation about such a page.

Edit:

Of course to use babel correctly I have to change the current language with \selectlanguage{french}. But maybe there are others things to do.

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@Stefan, @bryn: Variation in spelling makes “acknowledg[e]ments” hard to search for at the best of times! –  Peter LeFanu Lumsdaine Nov 19 '10 at 23:38

There's probably no hard-and-fast rule, but I have two suggestions for abstracts, acknowledgements etc. in different languages.

One possibility is to typeset the respective text components basically as unnumbered chapters or sections (using the highest-ranking heading of your document). As a tweak, you could locally disable the \clearpage command so that multiple abstracts/acknowledegements will not automatically start a new page. (This is inconsistent compared to other chapters, but should make clear that these text components are variants [translations] of the same text.)

Another possibility (but only applicable for two or three languages and fairly short texts) is to typeset the abstracts/acknowledgements inside a multicols environment, separating the different languages by \columnbreak.

In the following minimal example that shows both possibilities, I've used the KOMA-Script class scrreprt and the geometry package in order to fit three abstracts into one page.

\documentclass{scrreprt}

\usepackage[utf8]{inputenc}
\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}
\usepackage[latin,ngerman,english]{babel}

\usepackage[hscale=0.7,vscale=0.8]{geometry}

\usepackage{multicol}
\setlength{\columnsep}{1.5em}

\usepackage{blindtext}

\begin{document}

\begingroup
\let\clearpage\relax

\chapter*{\abstractname}

\blindtext

\selectlanguage{latin}

\chapter*{\abstractname}

\blindtext

\selectlanguage{ngerman}

\chapter*{\abstractname}

\blindtext

\endgroup

\begin{multicols}{3}[\chapter*{Abstracts in English/Latin/German}]

\blindtext

\columnbreak

\selectlanguage{latin}

\noindent\blindtext

\columnbreak

\selectlanguage{ngerman}

\noindent\blindtext

\end{multicols}

\end{document}


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